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Copper Beech tree

versatilegardener
February 27, 2009

Does anyone know if the copper Beech will grow in zone 8?

Comments (18)

  • pineresin

    What sort of zone 8?

    It does perfectly well in oceanic zone 8 in Britain (cool summers), but might not in continental zone 8 climates with hot summers.

    Resin

  • iforgotitsonevermind

    You mean you couldn't answer their question just from the number 8? What's wrong with you? âº

    Is copper beech another name for American Beech or European beech?

  • picea

    Copper Beech is a European beech with copper color leaves. That form seems very rare in the states as most forms sold in the US are cultivars chosen for purple or yellow leaf color, leaf shape or tree form. It is my understanding that the copper color leaf forms come true from seed. It would be nice to hear from Resin on that though.

    David

  • iforgotitsonevermind

    Oh that's right. Dawyk's Copper?

  • Embothrium

    There are giant old copper beeches scattered around out here in the west. But nurseries tend to sell grafted purple ones with cultivar names nowadays.

    Names like 'Dawyck Purple' (syn. 'Dawyck Red').

    "F. sylvatica f. purpurea (Ait.) Schneid.
    = F. sylvatica 'Atropunicea' or 'Atropurpurea'

    COPPER BEECH. PURPLE BEECH. Originated 'Riversii', 'Spaethiana', 'Swat Magret'). Paler seedlings have been sold as COPPER BEECHES ('Cuprea'). They grow every bit as large as the typical green BEECHES, and are just as common in cultivation"

    --Jacobson, NORTH AMERICAN LANDSCAPE TREES (1996, Ten Speed Press, Berkeley)

  • pineresin

    "Copper Beech is a European beech with copper color leaves. That form seems very rare in the states as most forms sold in the US are cultivars chosen for purple or yellow leaf color"

    Copper Beech is an overall name for all cultivars of European Beech with reddish to purple leaves (due to high anthocyanin levels in the tissues). As Bboy points out, there are numerous named cultivars available (and many additional un-named seedling-grown clones too).

    Resin

  • iforgotitsonevermind

    I've heard of purple beeches before but I didn't realize that was the same as copper beech. I don't quite understand why one would call purple leaves copper when purple and copper are two distinct colors.

  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

    Because the leaf color is quite variable depending on the selection and the amount of anothocyan pigmentation. A true 'copper' beech - what used to be known as Fagus sylvatica 'Cuprea' - has distinctly reddish-copperish colored foliage compared to the purple leaf forms, especially when backlit. There's some outstanding older examples of this planted locally.

  • picea

    Locally the only copper colored beech I have seen have been small seedlings. All others have been named selections even in places like Spring Grove Cemetary and Dawes Arboretum. Once I saw the seedlings with the copper color leaves it was clear how they got their name. I am also surprised they are not planted more locally as they are very attractive plants.

    Does anyone know if the copper color holds well or does it fade to green as some of the purple selections do?

  • Embothrium

    The less purple in spring, the more green later. Even in our cool climate the frequently offered 'Purpurea Tricolor' ('Tricolor' misapplied) usually turns a less pleasing bronze in summer, a sort of giant paper bag with pink highlights.

  • pineresin

    "I don't quite understand why one would call purple leaves copper when purple and copper are two distinct colors"

    Because the two grade into each other in the numerous different cultivars. The first cultivars selected were copper-coloured, and got the name Copper Beech; slowly, subsequent selection found steadily slightly more intense purple new clones. There was never a clean break between copper-coloured and purple-coloured clones, so never an easy point to decide to call some 'purple'.

    Resin

  • Goodwrencher

    I actually have one on my property planted in 1865. Found this out after some ladies were on a family pilgrimage just after I purchased the property. over 17' circumference. Huge tree, anyone that comes here comments on it.

  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

    what .. no picture????

    you are a tease

    ken

  • lcadem

    anyone who has been to britain knows how different is a true copper beech from the purple ones you see (rarely) here in the US.

    I have absolutely no clue as to why people here seem to prefer the darker purple ones. There is hardly anything as awe inspiring as a giant copper beech against the sun.

    Here is a link that might be useful: A picture here from a jaw-dropping specimen in Bristol, UK

  • LN Myshkin

    Although this thread is long dead, I saw a copper beech last year worth sharing.

    A picture tells a thousand words and the light cast by the canopy is so wonderful. A pleasant change from the usual green.


  • floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

    Guessing that's a UK park?

  • LN Myshkin

    Correct. It was a sunny early Summer day in North London (Victoria Park) to be precise.

  • floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

    I sort of guessed somewhere like that. Not been further East than Highbury Fields myself, apart from the Olympic Park. Maybe I'll go over there and explore some time. This one's in my local park.

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